Council approves upgrades in Columbus public safety

Plans to upgrade the console in the 911 center, design one fire station and build another with help from inmate labor were approved by Columbus Council on Tuesday.

All of the projects are included in Mayor Jim Wetherington’s plans to use Local Option Sales Tax money to improve public safety, roads and other capital projects on a list that totals $151 million.

A new building will be built to replace fire station No. 2 at 1437 29th St., one of the oldest fire stations in the state. The building will cost $1.6 million and will be paid for with interest received from a 2003 bond package. Deputy City Manager David Arrington said some of the work could be completed by state inmates but not all of it.

The board also gave approval to design a new building to replace fire station No. 9 at 4020 Jay St.

With more than 100 new police officers being hired to cover 10 additional beats citywide, Mayor Jim Wetherington said the console in 911 will need upgrading. The center will be equipped with new equipment that allows data to be quickly sent to officers on the streets.

“When we put the console in, we are going to have to look at hiring more employees in 911,” Wetherington said.